Although runner’s knee affects many runners, you actually don’t have to be a runner to have it. Have your knees been hurting lately? Here are some more things you should know about this condition and what you can do if you think you might have it.
What Is Runner’s Knee?
“Runner’s knee” is actually the common term for patellofemoral pain syndrome. You can get it by participating in any activity that puts strain on the knee or involves constant bending at the knee, which causes the knee to get out of alignment. It can result from activities as simple as walking, cycling, going up and down stairs, or constantly squatting to pick up boxes. It can be quite painful and can limit activity, but it is not considered serious.
Women are more at risk for runner’s knee than men are, although doctors aren’t sure exactly why this is.
There are several reasons why a person may develop this condition:
- The hamstrings. These muscles in the back of the thigh help you to retract and extend your leg. If they are too tight it can cause extra stress on these muscles – make sure you stretch before exercise to loosen them.
- The gluteus medius. If this muscle in the buttocks, which helps in leg movement, is not strong enough, your legs will try to compensate, causing injury.
- The feet. If your feet have no arch or a low arch, it puts tension on your legs, which puts stress on your knees, which can become misaligned.
- Where you exercise. Exercising on a hard surface such as concrete can place added stress on the knees.
Fortunately, runner’s knee is easy to treat. Good shoes with the proper support, physical therapy, exercising on softer surfaces, and/or strengthening exercises might be the answer. It is very rare that surgery is needed.
Are you in pain lately but you aren’t sure why? The staff at Sports Occupational and Knee Surgery in San Antonio, TX, can diagnose the problem and then can recommend treatment so that you can get back to enjoying life. Call (210) 696-9000 for an appointment today!